According to a report entitled, "The Rise in Canada's Richest 1%", by Armine Alnizyan, written for The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, "Canada's richest are taking over more gains from economic growth than ever before in recorded history". Among those 1%, 246,000 privileged few took almost 32% of all growth in incomes between 1997 and 2007. Armine Alnizyan goes on to say, "That's a bigger piece of the action than any other generation of rich Canadians has taken".
"Income trends over the past 90 years reveal that incomes are as concentrated in the hands of the richest1% as they were in the roaring twenties, but even then, those elite few didn't experience as rapid a growth in their income share as has occurred in the past twenty years", she says.
Clearly there has never been a more widespread or heartfelt discrepancy - so what is the cause?
The report states that historically Canada's elite few relied not on earned income but on returns on investments in stocks and bonds, and rent from their real estate properties. The richest 1% are now paid very large sums, on top of which there are bonuses, stock options, and other forms of compensation, making them more and more exclusive from those who comprised the have-nots.
There is a saying that goes,"There is such thing as a bad company, just bad management". Growing inequality exemplifies this saying, and further highlights the one deadly sin that can bring everything down - greed. Greed is mindless, and serves only the one, or the ones who are part of a like minded group of self serving and self centred individuals who have helped create the current world wide economic chaos.
Irresponsibility goes hand in hand with greed, because, when the whole economic scandal became public, and while people all over the world are still reeling from the shock waves, the refrain from the ones at the top says, "Well,no one told us we couldn't"!
Fortunately in Canada, we have better banking regulatory systems in place that help us avoid the liar loan based, housing bubble fiasco in the U.S., but that's no reason to be complacent. It is a reason to institute some transparent accountability so that we are not susceptible to what seems to be the modern legacy of the 21st century - crisis management